St Finbarr’s 0-15
Carbery Rangers 0-12
CARBERY Rangers manager Micheál O’Sullivan was left at a loss as to how his team fell victim to a seven-point second-half turnaround against St Finbarr’s at Páirc Uí Chaoimh.
Leading by 0-8 to 0-4 at half-time having played against the wind, the 2016 county champions were in a strong position against their city rivals, who had defeated them at the same stage last year.
However, the second half was a mirror image as a Steven Sherlock-inspired Barrs reeled in the Rosscarbery side to give them a berth in the decider against Castlehaven or Duhallow. For O’Sullivan, there were no excuses.
‘We performed well in the first half,’ he said, ‘we expected to continue that on in the second half. But look, you can’t legislate for a complete collapse, stopped playing all over the pitch.
‘When the Barrs came at us, you were saying, it was a spell and our fellas will come again. Our fellas just didn’t come again, for some reason. It is extremely disappointing.’
As to the nuts and bolts of the turnaround, O’Sullivan pinpointed the central sector of the field.
‘We were cleaned out at midfield in the second half,’ he said, ‘our midfield and our half-forward line were completely out of the game. The Barrs got on top and we didn’t break their momentum. We’ve no one to blame only ourselves. We didn’t perform. We can’t legislate for the way we folded in the second half.’
John O’Rourke and Brian Shanahan, with a pair of long-range efforts, each had two points in the first half as Ross were well on top, though they did need a good Paul Shanahan save to deny Colm Keane a tenth-minute goal.
Sherlock had all four of the Barrs’ scores in the opening period but he was off-target on as many occasions.
While points from Alan Jennings and Jerry O’Riordan kept Ross side in front as Ian Maguire, Colin Lyons and Eoghan McGreevey had scores for the Barrs early in the second half, four in a row from Sherlock around the three-quarter mark put the southsiders in front for the first time and they wouldn’t cede the advantage after that.
Though John Hayes ended a 14-minue scoreless spell for Ross, Michael Shields and Eoghan Finn extended the lead for the Barrs and Sherlock had two late points after Mark Hodnett had reduced the deficit to a point.
Was it a case that Ross had thought the job was done after the first half?‘It was made very clear to them at half-time that it was zero-zero because the Barrs are a quality team, we knew they were going to come,’ O’Sullivan said.
‘It’s hugely disappointing, we only lost 0-15 to 0-12 but it is like we lost by ten points. When you are losing out around the middle, when you are not getting breaking ball, when you are not getting the ball into your forwards, you are not going to be getting scores.
‘We missed a couple of chances. Jerry O’Riordan’s kick which went wide, if we had got that, it might have brought momentum back to us. It is very disappointing to lose a semi-final again.’
St Finbarr’s: Steven Sherlock 0-10 (6f, 1 45), Colin Lyons, Ian Maguire, Michael Shields, Eoghan McGreevey, Eoghan Finn 0-1 each.
Carbery Rangers: Brian Shanahan (1f, 1 45), Mark Hodnett, John Hayes (2f), John O’Rourke 0-2 each, Jerry O’Riordan, Robbie Kiely, Alan Jennings, Séamus Hayes 0-1 each.
St Finbarr’s: John Kerins; Sam Ryan, Alan McCarthy, Dylan Quinn; Colin Lyons, Alan O’Connor, Colm Scully; Ian Maguire, Eoin Comyns; Denis O’Brien, Michael Shields, Enda Dennehy; Eoghan McGreevey, Colm Keane, Steven Sherlock.
Subs: Conor Dennehy for McCarthy (12), Jamie Burns for Quinn (19), Colm Barrett for O’Connor (56), Cillian Myers Murray for McGreevey (60).
Carbery Rangers: Paul Shanahan; Cian Daly, Brian Shanahan, Rob Hegarty; Jerry O’Riordan, Robbie Kiely, Kevin MacMahon; Mark Hodnett, James Fitzpatrick; Alan Jennings, John Hayes, Brian Hodnett; Seamus Hayes, John O’Rourke, Daragh Hayes.
Subs: Declan Hayes for Daragh Hayes (51), Chris O’Donovan for Seamus Hayes, Patrick Hurley for Brian Hodnett (60).
Referee: John Ryan (Macroom).